WAUWATOSA — A public interview was held virtually on Monday for the three finalists pushing for the Wauwatosa Police Chief opening.
From police reform to morale and recruitment, the finalists spoke for two hours Monday, taking questions from the public while hoping to convince them why they should be Tosa's next chief following former chief Barry Weber’s 31 years in the role.
"In order to be responsive to the community's needs, you need to have a good understanding of what that response looks like,” said Jeffrey Norman, who is also the Milwaukee Police Department’s acting chief.
Each finalist has MPD ties: Acting Chief Jeffrey Norman, former Police Director of Training James MacGillis and Captain David Salazar touched on topics such as transparency, recruiting, crime trends and reform.
"I understand that trust has to be earned. It's not freely given,” MacGillis said when answering a question about using data and its relation to transparency.
Salazar touched on reaching out to some of police’s most heard critics to help bridge the gap.
"I think the people that are the most critical of the police need not to be ignored,” Salazar said.
Across neighborhoods, people explained what they want to see in a new chief.
"Whoever they pick, I just hope that it all works out,” said Ken Szohr.
Szohr wants the new chief to uphold the rule of law.
"Obey the law, do what you have to do. I'm a happy guy,” he said.
In another neighborhood, TMJ4 News spoke with Michele Braze, who said she's looking forward to new leadership and hopes all of the talk is followed by action.
"Listening is great, but if you aren't going to do anything about it, it doesn't matter,” she said.
Braze wants the new leader to reflect Wauwatosa today, but also Wauwatosa in the future.
"It's not as diverse as I think it should be, but hopefully we'll get there, and I think the police chief should represent that,” she said.
Now, members of the community are able to go online and give feedback on the finalists. Wauwatosa’s Police and Fire Commission will accept feedback until noon, Wednesday.
The commission will then interview the finalists the week of June 21.